07 Dec Figuring Out a New Way
Figuring Out a New Way
When we decided to choose figure as the concept for this edition, we thought of numbers and of people. And then, as has become a habit with Feed, we looked at adjacent territories.
A year ago, when we were thinking about the projects we wanted to share in 2020, we had planned for a very celebratory 10th edition of Feed magazine because it would be dedicated to celebrating a very special year for Jerónimo Martins. After all, in 2020 – a very round number in and of itself – Pingo Doce celebrated 40 years in operation and Biedronka celebrated 25. But the disruption caused by the global health crisis forced us to rearrange our priorities and put almost everything that wasn’t a basic necessity on the back burner.
The uncertainty and devastation precipitated by Covid-19 has affected societies, businesses and families, and a “new normal” has emerged, but there is nothing normal about it. If anyone believed that things would improve after the first few months, the second wave of the novel coronavirus that began after the summer left little room for doubt, and no desire to celebrate. There is no doubt that all energy, creativity and resilience must go into meeting urgent needs.
The steps we took on the ground to protect our employees, customers, supply chains and communities during the first wave were reinforced in the second half of 2020, always in keeping with our commitment to putting the safety and wellbeing of people first. When we decided to choose figure as the concept for this edition, we thought of numbers (40, 25 and 10, of course) and of people. And then, as has become a habit with Feed, we looked at adjacent territories and designed models and approaches to problems that needed to be tackled.
One such example is the far-reaching humanitarian initiative that is underway in Colombia, through a joint effort between our Ara chain, Caritas Colombia and Caritas Poland. Besides being hard hit by the pandemic, Colombia is also being affected by the consequences of the human tragedy in neighbouring Venezuela, with thousands of Venezuelan refugees crossing the border desperate to flee a life without hope. And when they reach Colombia, there is a helping hand to provide comfort, clothes and food.
The steps to protect our employees, customers, supply chains and communities during the first wave were reinforced in the second half of 2020.
In a year when the pandemic has deepened social inequalities and dramatically increased the number of people suffering from hunger across the globe, in Portugal, and as part of celebrating Pingo Doce’s 40th anniversary, we also hosted an important scientific conference dedicated to the Mediterranean Diet, which demonstrated what an excellent option this traditional dietary pattern is, both in terms of nutritional value and health, and from an economic and even environmental standpoint.
And because there is no way to escape numbers, their magic, their mystery and the certainty they provide us, as well as the questions they raise, in this edition we sat down with Professor Nuno Crato, a mathematician and the person who is spearheading a project my parents set up to promote the education of children and young people in Portugal – particularly those who are less fortunate – which marked its first anniversary in October.
In these troubled and testing times, we also wanted to talk about the future and about hope, which can be found in subjects as diverse as a young Polish chess prodigy or the story behind the world’s first nativity scene, a tradition shared by the countries where we operate. Among the many other issues we talk about in this new edition, it is also worth reading about an initiative we are supporting in Guatemala to offset the greenhouse gas emissions linked to the production of our magazine.
This 10th edition closes the first cycle of Feed magazine, which was created to give readers the inside scoop about who we are and what we do, and about the countries we call home and that are in our hearts. From now on, Feed will be an annual publication, so I look forward to speaking to you again in 12 months’ time. Until then, I wish you health and peace, hoping for a better 2021 for everyone.